Mould Inspection - IECLabs Services
Consulting services

Mould Inspection

IECL is a professional mould inspection, mould testing and mould detection company. We are the best choice if you are looking for a commercial mould inspection or a home mould inspection.

Mould Inspection Services

We have conducted thousands of mould inspection and water damage inspections including post-remediation verifications in Brisbane and Sydney since 2002. Our goal is to promote a healthy indoor air environment for the building occupants. Out certified mould inspectors have extensive knowledge on several types of mould including black mould, black toxic mould, Stachybotrys, and other moulds. We conduct mould testing and inspections with the following points in mind:

  • Locate the hidden source of mould
  • Accurate mould analysis and mould testing completed by Dr Alex Wilkie in our in-house lab
  • Locate plumbing leaks
  • Collect indoor/outdoor air and surface samples if needed to determine the mould present as well as exposure levels
  • Professional assessment of issues to help determine the cause of the mould and recommendation on mould remediation works

Our comprehensive mould assessment may include

When to Engage a Professional

How can I tell if I need a mould inspection? The presence of mould growth in your home

or workplace is an indicator for damp issues. Signs of mould growth in buildings can range from visible mould on walls, ceilings or any other surface, to musty odours or health symptoms without any visible mould. Moulds are part of the Kingdom of Fungi and rely on moisture to grow on suitable surfaces (almost any surface will do). Organic matter serves as its food source, and in a building this can be as simple as bits of dust. Ongoing damp issues can lead to damage and deterioration of building materials and cause mild to severe health issues.

The cause for mould growth in a home or building may be easy to identify such as the mould under the silicon seal in bathrooms or, in a more serious situation, a patch on the ceiling after a roof leak for example. In some cases however, the reasons for mould growth may be less obvious, more complex or widespread, and, due to a combination of factors. This is where professional help may be required.

 

Why to engage a Professional

Mould growth can be caused by many varying factors including ventilation issues, condensation on surfaces, air-conditioning problems, roof or pipe leaks, hidden leaks, structural issues such as rising damp or poor building design. In order to address more complex mould issues effectively and to reduce the risk of mould returning after a clean-up or remediation it is essential that the cause of the damp issue is identified and addressed. This requires understanding of structures, considerations of the building history and occupant’s health, and knowledge of indoor moulds, appropriated inspection tools and testing methods.

 

What should be included

A professional investigation and inspection of the building and should at minimum include the building history, interview with the occupants in regards to concerns and any relevant health issues, a thorough visual assessment, and testing of moisture in the air and in building materials.

The assessment and evaluation of air temperature and humidity, dew point and specific humidity is part of the field of psychrometry and allows to determine the risk of mould and microbial growth in buildings. Moisture content in materials can assist in finding out the extent of likely mould growth, risk for hidden growth and should be part of a professional inspection. Moisture testing can be carried out on non-metal surfaces such as concrete, timber, plasterboard, flooring materials, some types of tiles, etc.

Thermal imaging can be helpful to detect temperature differences caused by leaks, or thermal bridges where condensation is likely to occur. More invasive methods can be used when physical access to areas is limited. The process may include the use of a borescope, which consists of a small camera on a tube and allows to take a look at cavities and voids.

The information collected during an inspection should be sufficient to establish what steps are necessary to address the issue safely and efficiently, what is required to repair or rectify the cause. Mould sampling may be required to develop a Scope of Works if professional remediation is required. The information obtained during the inspection, as well as findings and recommendations should be provided in a written report.

 

When should mould testing be done?

In some, if not in all cases, testing for mould in the air or on surfaces is necessary to assist in establishing the extent of mould growth or to determine what types of moulds are present. This may be the case where health issues are experienced by the occupants or workers, or where musty odours are present. It may also be required when water or mould damage are associated with insurance claims or for litigation purposes.

Mould testing can help determine if mould is present, what types of mould are present and in which concentrations. Some types of mould – termed hydrophilic – can indicate water damage, as they required significant amounts of moisture to grow. Indoor concentrations should generally be lower than those found in the surrounding outdoor environment. While there are currently no exposure standards for mould, the results from an inspection and sampling results may assist in ascertaining if a building is safe for occupancy.

Post Remediation Verification (PRV) testing is conducted after remediation projects to assess if the building has been effectively restored and the presence of mould is comparable to normal background levels such as in the outdoors.

Our Mould Inspection Report

  • We can write a scope of work that provides detailed steps for an accredited mould remediation specialist to follow when completing the mould remediation.
  • The report will include photos of a complete investigation of the property with a mud map outlining the areas with moisture ingress.
  • We will include any mould testing results with surface and mould air testing results with recommendations

Who to engage for a Professional Mould Inspection

Professionals inspecting homes for mould should have undergone training such as provided by the Institute for Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC), as building biologist or occupational hygienist, understand basic principles of building science and should have substantial experience.

The team at IECL is qualified and experienced in assessing buildings for water damage and mould growth, to conduct mould sampling and develop strategies for appropriate action to address damp issues in residential or commercial buildings.

Contact us here to arrange an inspection.

 

References

Australian Building Codes Board. (2019). Condensation in buildings. In ACAB.gov. Australian Building Codes Board. https://www.abcb.gov.au/Resources/Publications/Education-Training/Condensation-in-Buildings

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2019). CDC – Mold – General Information – Basic Facts. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/mold/faqs.htm

IICRC. (2015). ANSI/IICRC S520. Institute of Inspection, Cleaning & Restoration Certification.

Kemp, P., & Neumeister-Kemp, H. (2010). Australian mould guideline: The go-to guide for everything mould, by Peter Kemp and Heike Neumeister-Kemp. Messenger Publishing.

New York State Department of Health. (2010). New York State Toxic Mold Task Force Final Report to the Governor and Legislature. In New York State Department of Health. New York State Department of Health. https://www.health.ny.gov/

Organisation Mondiale De La Santé. Bureau Régional De L’europe. (2009). WHO guidelines for indoor air quality : dampness and mould. Who Regional Office For Europe, Cop.

Prezant, B., Weekes, D. M., Miller, J. D., & American Industrial Hygiene Association. (2008). Recognition, evaluation, and control of indoor mold. American Industrial Hygiene Association.

United States Environmental Protection Agency. (2014, August 4). Mold Remediation in Schools and Commercial Buildings Guide | US EPA. US EPA; United States Environmental Protection Agency. https://www.epa.gov/mold/mold-remediation-schools-and-commercial-buildings-guide

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